Reading this article could seriously improve your health

It can often feel like health-related news is relentlessly negative – and this at a time when, on average, we’ve never been healthier. Certainly, diabetes and mental illness tend to dominate the headlines these days.

Yet for every gloomy report, there is usually an upside to be found. The numbers of teenagers using online services and apps to cope with their mental health issues has soared in recent years – one app for under-18s has been rolled out to more than half the NHS commissioning services in the UK.

Even in the grim world of chronic drug addiction, there are initiatives that can mitigate. Mattha Busby travelled to Denmark to find out why far fewer continental Europeans die from overdoses than Brits.

Ukraine is one of Europe’s least healthy countries, with obesity and heart disease growing problems for a 50 million-strong population. Joe Wallen found an innovation to address this coming from a very unusual quarter.

Finally, just the very act of reading this article could improve your health – according to the latest research from Southampton Business School. A new study from Dr Denise Baden has found that constructive or solution-based stories instil positive emotions in readers, making them more likely to take action and less likely to succumb to anxiety.

Read the article in the Guardian.

[This piece was published on 23/11/18]